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OneEighty opens new women’s residential treatment facility

The Daily Record - 1/29/2020

WOOSTER — One of the greatest barriers for women entering a facility for substance abuse issues is leaving their children behind.

The new OneEighty Women’s Residential Treatment Facility, which features eight additional beds set aside for children, should help alleviate that concern.

The nonprofit opened the building, located at 2177 Noble Drive, to provide treatment for substance abuse disorders in a residential setting. The program, previously housed at the Beacon House on Spink Street, teaches clients recovery tools for long-term sobriety and assists in their transition back into the community.

A public open house will be held from 4 to 7 p.m.Feb. 6.

The Noble Foundation donated three acres for the 10,000-square-foot facility, constructed by Campbell Construction. The total cost of the project was $1.55 million.

Two grant opportunities helped to complete the project. The Mental Health & Recovery Board of Wayne and Holmes Counties (MHRB) helped OneEighty to secure a $500,000 from the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Service. Federal Home Loan Bank of Cincinnati awarded a $360,000 grant, which was facilitated by Alicia Wallace, vice president, commercial banking at Commercial & Savings Bank in Wooster.

“We’ve been particularly successful at pulling down state and federal resources to help support our programs,” said Bobbi Douglas, executive director of OneEighty.

The treatment facility features an open floor plan with a large kitchen, dining and living space, and beautiful views out the back windows. A conference room provides space for group therapy, 12-step programs and educational classes. The facility also provides dedicated office space for a full-time counselor, a residential support specialist and case manager.

“This facility offers more privacy in peaceful and serene surroundings,” said Joan Fenzl, who raised money for the project and participated in public relations events with her husband Tom. “Much care was taken in making this a respectful and healing environment.”

Christy VanSickle, community relations and marketing manager for OneEighty, has already heard from the clients that the new facility is much quieter than the Beacon House. The treatment facility is set away from heavy traffic outside and the clients are not living in tight quarters.

A private hallway leads to the rooms that accommodate 16 beds for women (four more than the Beacon House), along with the space for children. Previously, when a woman wanted to bring her children, the house would lose a treatment bed for another client.

“When you hear stories of women who are able to receive substance use disorder treatment and keep their family together, you understand the deeper mission of family stability,” said Judy Wortham Wood, executive director of the Mental Health & Recovery Board of Wayne & Holmes Counties. “This treatment center is focused on treatment and families, which is such an asset to our community.”

A staff member stays on duty overnight at the end of the hallway to tend to any needs the clients may experience. The bedrooms have no closets and limited storage space so the clients bring only what they need most and it’s harder to hide contraband. OneEighty’s full-time Medical Director Dr. Nicole Labor oversees medication management at the facility.

OneEighty is looking to add a chef. The clients do their own cooking now, preparing meals approved by a dietician. The organization also works with another dietician who specialized in addiction and mental health issues and works with the clients on diet, takes them shopping, and teaches them how to cook healthy meals.

Douglas also hopes the clients can plant a garden to grow their own fruits and vegetables that can help support not only the residential treatment facility but the other properties operated by OneEighty.

“It’s the first time we’ve not been landlocked,” the executive director said. “There’s something good about getting your hands in the soil. … It’s another good life skill they can leave with.”

Clients enrolled in the treatment program moved from the Beacon House to the new facility in December. The Beacon House will become another recovery house, bringing the total to nine recovery homes operated by OneEighty.

When clients arrive at the facility, they are given a handbook that outlines all of the expectations. They fill out paperwork and receive a chore on the chore chart. Once they’re settled, they quickly jump into whatever activity is taking place at that time.

Most clients are referred to OneEighty for residential treatment from the criminal justice system but self-referential ranks second. Other sources include children services, employers and families.

“People coming here are not in a whole lot of denial about the fact that they have addiction issues,” Douglas said. “They have failed at treatment numerous times. Sometimes they’re in our outpatient programs and they’re not doing well so they get referred to residential.”

The completion of the residential treatment facility is one of three projects being funded by the Campaign for Recovery. OneEighty is still $125,000 short of its $2 million goal to offer more comprehensive recovery services and facilities.

The other two projects being funded by the campaign are the renovation and restructuring of space in the Gault Liberty Center (OneEighty’s main office) to build a new Recovery Medical Center and complete a community room in the main office to facilitate discreet 12-step meetings, community needs, and OneEighty administrative requirements.

The total cost for the center is $390,000 and includes furniture, fixtures and equipment. The organization budgeted $60,000 for the community room.

To accommodate the recovery medical center, the maintenance department is relocating to a more central location to service all of OneEighty’s facilities.

Reporter Emily Morgan can be reached at 330-287-1632 or emorgan@the-daily-record.com.

CREDIT: EMILY MORGAN